As much as we writers like to think our abilities enable us to adequately paint a mental picture with our words, nothing can top actual photography in helping the reader really “see” our story. That’s especially true in the true crime genre, where readers want to see what the main characters looked like and not just imagine them.

We’re dealing with real people in true crime books, and actual photos serve to connect the reader on a more emotional level with the victim and other primary participants. I found that’s certainly the case with my latest effort, Torture at the Back Forty – The Gang Rape and Slaying of Margaret Anderson (due out Aug. 7 through TitleTown Publishing).

This crime occurred in 1983, meaning some of the photos and sketches I wanted to use in the book were hidden in police or newspaper archives, boxes kept by retired law enforcement officers, and old family albums.

During the more than a year that I spent researching this case, I was able to collect a rather impressive assortment that will add to my readers’ enjoyment of the book. I hesitate to use the word “enjoyment” with regard to such a hideous crime, but fans of true crime books will certainly appreciate the detail presented in the telling of this story.

As is the case with many true crime books, you just can’t make this stuff up.
Posted by Mike on May 28, 2009 at 10:41 AM under